Merging Christianity Into Paganism
Article ID: 3139
Age Group: Adult
Days Up: 6,040
Times Read: 6,949
Author: Mino [a WitchVox Sponsor]
Posted: December 10th. 2000
Times Viewed: 6,949
One can only speak 'the truth' from the perspective of experience. I do not quote anyone in particular, yet I quote the entire world as I know it: it's people, it's gods and everything that defines life. The religious world of today refers to belief systems as "the truth." I see truth as being the past, present and future. It heralds from former existences and flows to what happens after death. The only truth that one can be relatively certain about comes through personal experiences from childhood to the here and now. Anything else that has happened or will happen is pure belief. If truth can only be verified by experience, then its' extension into the future is by resulting actions of both the known past and now. It's roots from the past give us the conditions and planetary influences that we call 'life.' 'Belief' is something learned from teachers, including oneself. Both Christianity and Paganism are systematic beliefs.
There is really no individual that can accurately define Paganism or Christianity in the context of complete absolution of truth from belief, as a lifestyle for the populace. Two Pagans rarely see eye-to-eye on every part of their shared belief-system. Two Christians of the same denomination share most beliefs, but there is often a great difference of what it means to be Christian between the denominational boundary lines. Wars have been fought over matters of what belief systems should and should not include in its definition.
One of the main differences that I see between Pagans (in general) and Christians is the usage of the compilation of writings known as the Holy Bible. Almost all Christians accept the words of these ancient authors as 'the truth, ' whereas Pagans take it as a mixture of history and myth. Although Christian acceptance of the Old and New Testaments mandate these books as the 'word of God, ' interpretations vary from sect to sect and individual to individual. So I conclude that both Christianity and Paganism must be defined by the individual that adheres to either, or even a mixture of the two.
There are those on each side of the Pagan-Christian fence that accept only those whose beliefs and practical applications that are identical to their own as validation to rightful claim of belief-system title. Yet there are others who accept an individuals choice as valid to defining a classification. To me, Christianity and Paganism are somewhat of a conflict of interest. If I followed the teachings of Christ, then I must rely upon the four gospels of Mathew, Mark, Luke and John for my education. These texts have come down through several thousand years of time, and have been subjected to Roman influence as well as other controlling empirical religious practitioners through transcriptions. This has left more of a margin for inaccuracy than the current American Election Process! Then one must decide if he/she accepts the rest of the New Testament along with what the translators called the teachings of Christ. The majority of the New Testament writings came from the Apostle Paul, who never even knew Christ before he was crucified, buried, descended to hell, arose to live again and then ascended into heaven! It is written that Christ appeared to him on the road to Damascus. This former Roman centurion is believed to have participated in the gathering-up of followers of the new Christian religion to be fed to the lions. Yet in other books, there are many beautiful passages and themes throughout the King James Version of the Holy Bible. Much of the poetic and parabolic writings actually fit very well into a Pagan lifestyle.
If an individual pays homage to mainstream Christian church organizations and defines Christianity as a 'don't-do-this-or-suffer-hell-forever' path, then Paganism becomes an enemy to the faith. An individual that understands the source(s) of the ancient Hebrew texts and the contexts of the gospels and even the epistles in the Holy Bible can mix them powerfully into a Pagan life without the condemnations of empirical rule. The problem with most people that discover themselves in Paganism after having been Christian is the limited study of the writings through Sunday School Teachers, Priests, Ministers and other pastoral members of congregations. Often, hypocrisy is shown by many that lead by word over example and it leaves a bad taste in the mouth of a follower. This sends them away to seek out something that is purer than what they have experienced.
Breaking free from the molds of society and even parental religious upbringing seems to be the first hurdle that we all must face when defining our personal belief-system. One must first define what it means to be Pagan, Christian, Mormon, Jewish, or any other systematic classification. A choice can then be made as to how and why certain actions are either performed or abstained from in belief and practice. There will always be skeptics. There will always be opposition. There will always be conflict. If these seemingly negative things did not exist, individuality would have no definitive function.
I honor my years of learning. My parents were Episcopal. My Father is a 32nd degree Mason, as was his father a Master Mason and a 7th Day Adventist. My formative years as a child were spent with those family members. When my sister who is 8 years older than I became Pentecostal, I followed her into it. It was somewhat of a rebellion of the way that I was raised to believe, but it was the first step to becoming the individual that I am. My experiences with the church as a young man were the very things that allowed me to open my inner being to the world around me. The charismatic religious application appealed to me. It was during this time that I first felt spiritual influences coming to me from an external source. Before, these experiences seemed to be limited to dreams and day-mares. Of course, I was told that all my childhood experiences with spiritual beings only existed in my head. Christianity showed me that energy could be raised and 'miracles' could occur. Guardian Angels became Spirit Guides later on. Man's best friends became familiars. Hell moved from an eternal state to a temporary set-back! Then a realization hit me like a ton of bricks. I was not the powerful man that I thought I was after God showed me a little more about Herself. History is now my past, and Herstory has given me the balance that I was lacking.
I do know of several Witches who use the red-letter words of Christ in the four gospels as the 'keys to magick.' When I first learned of their practices, I thought them to be in contrast with my own views of the Craft. As time passed, I observed them to be very knowledgeable and also powerfully magickal! It caused me to rethink what I had learned from my years as a Christian and to see it in a new light. I separate myself from Christians for the most part, because I know what most of them think about my practice of the Craft. Judge not lest you be judged. What one does, comes back to him/her. On the flipside, Christians separate themselves from me when they find out that I am a practicing Witch. I know that is a result of my choice to be separate from them, but I prefer it that way because I no longer seek converts to my religion. Blessed Be.
Location: Ft. Myers, Florida
Author's Profile: To learn more about Mino - Click HERE
Bio: The name "Mino Mercurious" is a chosen one. It tells the world who and what this person is all about, for those who wish to know. "Mino" was born in Indianapolis, Indiana on November 8, 1958 into the ADAIR family. I became a licensed minister of the United Pentecostal Church International at the young age of 18, and was a youth minister and part time evangelist into my early 20's. I discovered Wicca in 1986, and was also the high priest of a coven for 7 years. I have mentored many students of the Craft as both an on-line teacher and face to face initiator.
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